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TRICARE Retired Reserve


TRICARE Retired Reserve is a premium-based healthcare plan designed specifically for retired reserve members and their eligible family members. This plan provides comprehensive medical coverage under the TRICARE program. It serves as an affordable health insurance option for qualified retired reservists, their survivors, and immediate family members until they are eligible for TRICARE For Life or other Medicare plans.

Key Takeaways

  1. TRICARE Retired Reserve is a premium-based healthcare plan for retired reserve and National Guard members, their qualified family members, and survivors.
  2. This plan provides comprehensive healthcare coverage, including inpatient and outpatient services, mental health care, prescription medications, and preventive health care services.
  3. Eligibility for TRICARE Retired Reserve is based on the member’s retirement status and requires enrollment, with monthly premiums determined by the sponsor’s military status and family composition.


TRICARE Retired Reserve is an important term in VA benefits as it refers to a premium-based health care plan specifically designed for retired reserve component members and their eligible family members.

This comprehensive plan provides medical coverage to those who have served their country in the reserve forces, ensuring access to quality healthcare even in their retirement years.

The significance of TRICARE Retired Reserve lies in its recognition of the dedication and sacrifices made by reservists and their families, offering them crucial support and protection for their well-being and easing the transition to civilian life.


TRICARE Retired Reserve serves the purpose of providing a comprehensive healthcare coverage to retired reserve members, their families, and survivors. As retired reserve members have committed their lives and career in serving the nation and protecting its citizens, it is crucial that they are provided with quality health care services throughout their retirement years. TRICARE Retired Reserve ensures that they receive the medical attention and support they deserve, thus enhancing their quality of life and well-being after their years of service.

This comprehensive program caters to various medical needs, including inpatient and outpatient services, prescription medications, dental care, and behavioral health care, as well as offering preventive and routine care services. The primary use of TRICARE Retired Reserve is to offer healthcare benefits to eligible beneficiaries, ensuring that they have access to affordable healthcare options and providers. This also contributes to maintaining the morale and welfare of retired reserve members, who continue to play an essential role in the military community.

The program helps retired reservists and their families focus on their health and wellness, free from the stress of excessive healthcare expenses. Additionally, TRICARE Retired Reserve aims to retain and attract talent in the reserve component to maintain a strong, resilient, and skilled force that is capable of protecting and serving the nation effectively. With comprehensive health coverage, retired reserve members and their families can feel confident in the care and support provided to them as they transition to civilian life.

Examples of TRICARE Retired Reserve

TRICARE Retired Reserve is a premium-based healthcare plan designed for retired reserve members, their families, and qualified survivors. It offers comprehensive healthcare coverage similar to what active duty and retired service members receive. Here are three real-world examples of how TRICARE Retired Reserve can benefit eligible individuals:

Health Services Access: A retired reservist who has served honorably in the Army National Guard may need medical care for an ongoing health condition. With TRICARE Retired Reserve, they will have access to a wide range of healthcare services from TRICARE-authorized providers, including preventive care, inpatient and outpatient care, mental health services, and prescription medications.

Family healthcare coverage: A retired reservist’s spouse and children are also eligible for coverage under TRICARE Retired Reserve. This means the entire family can enjoy comprehensive healthcare benefits, including access to primary care providers, specialists, and emergency care services. For example, if a retired reserve member’s daughter requires an emergency appendectomy, their TRICARE Retired Reserve coverage will help cover the costs of the treatment.

Continuity of care for “gray-area” retirees: Members who have retired from the reserves but have not yet reached the age of 60 (sometimes referred to as “gray-area” retirees), do not have access to the same benefits as those who have reached that age. By enrolling in TRICARE Retired Reserve, these gray-area retirees can maintain their healthcare coverage during this period, ensuring they and their families get appropriate care while waiting for full retirement benefits to begin. For instance, if a 57-year-old retired reserve member is involved in a car accident and requires physical rehabilitation, their TRICARE Retired Reserve coverage will provide access to the necessary treatment during their recovery.

TRICARE Retired Reserve FAQ

What is TRICARE Retired Reserve?

TRICARE Retired Reserve is a health plan designed specifically for retired Reserve members, their families, and survivors. It offers comprehensive coverage that includes medical, dental, and pharmacy benefits, making it an excellent option for eligible individuals seeking affordable healthcare.

Who is eligible for TRICARE Retired Reserve?

Eligibility for TRICARE Retired Reserve is extended to retired Reserve members under the age of 60 who have completed at least 20 qualifying years of service, their eligible family members, and qualified survivors.

How do I enroll in TRICARE Retired Reserve?

To enroll in TRICARE Retired Reserve, you can use the milConnect website, by signing in with your Department of Defense Self-Service Logon (DS Logon). You can also enroll by mail, fax, or in person at a TRICARE Service Center.

What services are covered under TRICARE Retired Reserve?

TRICARE Retired Reserve offers comprehensive coverage, including inpatient and outpatient care, prescription medications, preventive health services, mental health care, dental care (with separate enrollment), and more. For a detailed list of covered services, consult the TRICARE website or the TRICARE Retired Reserve Handbook.

Are there any costs associated with TRICARE Retired Reserve?

Yes, there are costs associated with TRICARE Retired Reserve. These include enrollment fees, monthly premiums, deductibles, copayments, and cost-shares. The exact amounts depend on the plan, your sponsor’s status, and the type of care received. Visit the TRICARE website for a detailed breakdown of costs.

How does TRICARE Retired Reserve differ from other TRICARE plans?

TRICARE Retired Reserve is specifically designed for retired Reserve members and their families. It offers similar benefits to TRICARE Prime and TRICARE Select, but with different cost structures and enrollment requirements. Additionally, TRICARE Retired Reserve does not require a referral to see a specialist. However, authorization may still be required for certain services.

What happens to my TRICARE Retired Reserve coverage when I turn 60?

When a retired Reserve member turns 60, they will transition to a different TRICARE plan depending on their eligibility and preferences. Options include TRICARE Prime, TRICARE Select, or TRICARE For Life. It is important to review your healthcare options and make any necessary changes during the 90-day transition period surrounding your 60th birthday.

Related VA Benefit Terms

  • TRICARE Prime
  • TRICARE Select
  • Continued Health Care Benefit Program (CHCBP)
  • TRICARE for Life (TFL)
  • TRICARE Pharmacy Program

Sources for More Information